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According to owner Richard Young, world champion and multiple award winner I Luv The Nitelife has passed away after complications from foaling. She was 10 years old. "During foaling Nitelife experienced a dystocia where the foal was abnormally positioned," said attending farm veterinarian Dr. Courtney Pink. "Through great efforts we were able to deliver the foal, but unfortunately we lost them both. We are terribly saddened by the loss. May her legacy live on through her foals. She was a tremendous mare and will be greatly missed by all." As a two-year-old, I Luv The Nitelife (Rocknroll Hanover-Lisjune) put together a record reading 4-4-1 in 10 freshman starts to bank $682,574 in purses for owners Richard & Joanne Young and trainer Chris Ryder. In addition to setting a world record of 1:50.1 in an elimination of the Shes A Great Lady at Mohawk Racetrack, she also won the final along with divisions of the Eternal Camnation and Bluegrass Stakes. I Luv The Nitelife was also a runner-up in the Champlain Stake, International Stallion Stakes and Breeders Crown. The O'Brien voters gave her the nod as their choice for Two-Year-Old Pacing Filly of the Year in 2012. The voters had no doubt who was the best three-year-old pacing filly in 2013. I Luv The Nitelife won 13 of 15 races that year and $1.25 million en route to divisional honours as Three-Year-Old Pacing Filly of the Year in Canada and in the U.S. Her sophomore triumphs included the Breeders Crown, Fan Hanover, Valley Forge, Lynch Memorial, Jugette and Mistletoe Shalee. Her 1:48.4 time in the Valley Forge established a world record for a three-year-old filly on a five-eighths-mile track. I Luv The Nitelife won 17 of 27 races and $1.94 million in purses. No female pacer in harness racing history has won more money at ages two and three. The Youngs sold I Luv The Nitelife as a four-year-old to Adam Bowden's Diamond Creek Farm in 2014. She had three foals: Blacklight, a 2016 foal by Somebeachsomewhere; Millennial, a 2017 Sweet Lou colt and a 2019 Always B Miki yearling named Broadway. "When we agreed to do the live foal cameras this year, we knew there would be a chance that something would go wrong," said Diamond Creek's Adam Bowden. "We feel it is important to show not just the highs but also the lows of life on a breeding farm. Unfortunately, this is one of the lowest moments, not only losing a mare of her caliber in the industry, but also her loss as a much-loved member of the farm." From Richard Young and Diamond Creek Farm

The great pacing stallion Rocknroll Hanover passed on March 14, 2013 at a clinic in New Jersey, after showing signs of gastric distress at a Perretti satellite site in Pennsylvania. He was only eleven years old.   The son of Western Ideal and Rich N Elegant, who brought $190,000 at Harrisburg as a yearling, had won 15 races and earned $2.7 million during his two-year career. Rocknroll Hanover stood his first season at Perretti Farms in New Jersey in 2006 for a $15,000 stud fee. He drew 189 mares, resulting in 151 registered foals in 2007. These included his richest son, Rock N Roll Heaven, and his richest and fastest daughter, Put On A Show. The former is sending his second crop to the races after getting mixed results from the first, while POAS has been retired and bred to Somebeachsomewhere. Their first filly will sell at Lexington Selected this year. Others from that initial offering include millionaires Rock N Soul and Ticket To Rock, as well as Tobago Cays, Classic Rock NRoll and Valentino. Rockin Image, who is making a name for himself as a sire in Indiana, via his son Freaky Feet Pete and others, was also from that crop. The venerable race mare Rocklamation came from Rocknroll’s second crop, as did Pretty Katherine, but there were no great fillies or colts in that offering. The import Foreclosure N earned the most of any in the stallion ranks. Other standouts were Rollwithitharry, Abelard Hanover and Fat Man’s Alley. As is often the case, the second crop was disappointing when measured against the first. Foreclosure bred 33 mares in Ohio in 2013, resulting in 20 registered foals. He raced eight times in the fall of that year, so the stallion experiment was apparently concluded for now. Roclamation was bought back at the Tattersalls Mixed sale by two of her owners but failed to get in foal, so she’s back racing with little success. A Rocknroll Dance and Pet Rock, both world record holders at four, put a charge in crop number three. The former won the Pace and banked $1.8 million at two and three, while Pet Rock earned about a million dollars at three. The competition for supremacy in that division was fierce. Breeders Crown winner Heston Blue Chip won the Dan Patch Award; Michaels Power took the Jug; Thinking Out Loud won the Cup and Sweet Lou took the Tattersalls Pace. ARNRD and Pet Rock both blossomed at four. Pet Rock, who stands in Ohio, set records in the Winbak at Delaware—1:48.1—and the Ewart at Scioto—1:47.2—in successive weeks. Dance, who now stands in Pennsylvania was the first to put three sub 1:48 wins together. Both were very well received in the stallion ranks. Pet Rock bred 137 mares last year, while A Rocknroll Dance bred 139. Panther Hanover, who won the New Jersey Classic in 1:47.2, is another speed demon from that class. The son of the successful race mare Panned Out has not mimicked the popularity of his paternal brothers. He bred nine mares in New York last year. Simply Business, Time To Roll and Rockaround Sue are a few more from the third crop. I Luv The Nitelife came along the following year. She set world records at two and three and won more money during that stretch than any filly ever had. Nitelife was retired last season and sold to Diamond Creek Farm. By 2010 Rocknroll Hanover was standing for $20,000, and he went to $25,000 in 2011. As was the case with just about every stallion, the economic downturn required an adjustment. And the upheaval in New Jersey regarding the viability of The Meadowlands compounded the problem for the folks at Perretti. His fee was dropped to $15,000 in 2012 and that’s where it was when he passed the following year. Crop number five, the horses that are now four-year-olds, didn’t overwhelm anyone at the top end, at least while they were colts and fillies. There were 149 registered, 67 colts and 82 fillies. Their collective earnings were down considerably from those that preceded them. At the same time, Rocknroll is currently second to Bettor’s Delight among all-age pacers, with 355 starters showing more than $5 million in earnings. Last year he was also second to Bettor’s Delight, with 446 earning well over $13 million. So the hundreds of low profile, journeyman Rocknrolls are killing it year after year at tracks all over North America. Almost two hundred of them have eclipsed the $100 mark. Some are coming alive at four. Rockeyed Optimist, who has won 9 of 10 starts this year, including wins in the finals of the Sonsam Series and the Clyde Hirt, is one of them. Over the weekend he came first up at the half and beat Cup winner JK Endofanera and Jug winner Limelight Beach in a split of the Graduate for Tim Tetrick. Doo Wop Hanover, who paid $64 when he won his two-year-old Breeders Crown elimination at Pocono Downs, and who recently won the first leg of the Graduate in a track record 1:47.4 at Tioga, took another Graduate split on Saturday as he ran down All Bets Off, again for Tetrick. He matched his paternal brother’s 1:48 winning time. Of this year’s sophomore class, Happiness, a sister to Pangiorno, won the Reynolds for Ron Burke and has been one of the top fillies in the NJSS. Rock N Roll World, a son of two-time division champ Worldly Beauty and a brother to World Of Rocknroll, was second in high-end races five times this year, before finishing third in the Rooney. He’s staked to the Cup. And Hurrikane Ali is another promising colt. Obviously Rocknroll hasn’t had time to prove himself as a productive broodmare sire, but it’s hard to imagine that not being the case. Rocknroll Hanover mares offer enticing outcross opportunities to Somebeachsomwhere. More than two dozen such foals have been registered. And stallions from the Adios line are also a good fit for his mares: there are already 20 by Art Major and eight by Sportswriter. Adios line stallion McArdle has produced last year’s sophomore division champ McWicked as well as his richest daughter, Big McDeal, with Western Ideal mares. And three-time Molson winner, State Treasurer (Real Artist), is out of one of his mares. There are also good opportunities for stallions from the Meadow Skipper line: Bettor’s Delight has sired 17, Well Said seven and Dragon Again eight. And there are three by Shadyshark Hanover and one by Custard The Dragon. The world’s reigning expert on Rocknroll, Bob Marks, sees matching up the sons of Most Happy Fella as the key to it all. We’ve had a run of great pacing fillies lately, and three of the best, See You At Peelers, American Jewel and I Luv The Nitelife, all follow this template. Their sires are Bettor’s Delight, American Ideal and Rocknroll Hanover, respectively. Their dams are by Western Ideal, Camluck and Camluck again. Badlands Hanover is by Western Hanover and out of a Tyler B mare. BC winner and top tier player in the NA Cup, Traceur Hanover, is by Western Ideal and out of a Camluck mare. Heston Blue Chip is by Rocknroll’s paternal brother American Ideal and out of a Cam’s Card Shark mare. While FFA speedball Shark Gesture is a son of Cam’s Card Shark out of a Western Hanover mare. All of them go back to MHF top and bottom. Many significant stallions have passed early: Meadow Skipper’s sire Dale Frost passed at 17 after breaking a leg; Skipper’s most influential siring son, Most Happy Fella, also passed at 17 after breaking a leg. Billy Direct died of heart trouble at age 13. Noble Gesture, who died from a heart attack at age 13 in 1981, saw his son Balanced Image carry him into the 21st century, and his granddaughter, Feeling Great, produce Self Possessed, the granddad of Father Patrick. Rocknroll left enough pieces to extend himself, top and bottom. That speed and grit we saw from Doo Wop Hanover and Rockeyed Optimist on Saturday night should be in evidence from the sons and daughters of Rocknroll Heaven, Rockin Image, A Rocknroll Dance, Pet Rock and all the rest well into the future.  Joe FitzGerald has been an avid harness racing fan and historian for the last half-century. He writes a weekly blog for Joe’s commentary reflects his own views and not that of Harnesslink  

It was announced yesterday by owners Richard and Joanne Young and trainer Chris Ryder that the party is over for world champion pacer I Luv The Nitelife as she has been retired from racing. After attempting to come back from an injury sustained at the end of the 2013 season, owners Richard and Joanne Young made the decision to quit with I Luv The Nitelife on Tuesday. The daughter of Rocknroll Hanover - Lisjune was winless in two starts this year after recovering from a slab knee fracture and atrial fibrillation. "[She] has a few issues we didn't feel she deserved to race with," trainer Chris Ryder confirmed to Trot Insider. "Just a great mare, all heart. Very saddened by her retirement but it is the thing to do." Richard Young purchased I Luv The Nitelife, a daughter of stallion Rocknroll Hanover out of the mare Lisjune, for $60,000 under the name Hard Rock Deo at the Lexington Selected Sale in 2011. Richard Young loves to name his yearlings with something unique and came up with "I Luv The Nitelife" as he has done with other top horses he and Joanne own including Put On A Show.  Now according to the Young's, I Luv The Nitelife will go to the breeding shed next season. "We are going to miss you racing sweet girl!," Joanne Young said, "Oh, but the babies you will make!" As a two-year-old, 'Nitelife' put together a record reading 4-4-1 in 10 freshman starts to bank $682,574 in purses for the Youngs and trainer Chris Ryder. In addition to setting a world record of 1:50.1 in an elimination of the She's A Great Lady at Mohawk Racetrack, she also won the final along with divisions of the Eternal Camnation and Bluegrass Stakes. I Luv The Nitelife was also a runner-up in the Champlain Stake, International Stallion Stakes and Breeders Crown. The O'Brien voters gave her the nod as their choice for Two-Year-Old Pacing Filly of the Year in 2012. The voters had no doubt who was the best three-year-old pacing filly in 2013. I Luv The Nitelife won 13 of 15 races last year and $1.25 million en route to divisional honours as Three-Year-Old Pacing Filly of the Year in Canada and capturing USHWA's Dan Patch Award in the U.S. Her sophomore triumphs included the Breeders Crown, Fan Hanover, Valley Forge, Lynch Memorial, Jugette, Mistletoe Shalee and Miss New Jersey Pacing Classic. Her 1:48.4 time in the Valley Forge is the world record for a three-year-old filly on a five-eighths-mile track.   For her career, the daughter of Rocknroll Hanover-Lisjune has won 17 of 27 races and $1.94 million. No female pacer in harness racing history has won more money at ages two and three. "‎Very appreciative of the honors she accumulated," added Ryder. "Very special. She will be impossible to replace." With two world records and multiple stakes under her belt, one of her losses stands out to her co-owner as the race that shows her guts and determination. "Her last race [at three] in the American National," Richard Young told Trot Insider. "She should have lost by 10 and just got beat. One of the most memorable races of my life, and more than likely the race that ended her career." ‎"A mare like 'Nitelife' is as good as it gets, all business," continued Young. "She gave all she had in every race. She didn't wait for things to set up. She forced everyone to alter their style to race her. "If she passes her will to compete, she will be the ultimate broodmare." by Steve Wolf for with files from Trot Insider

CAMPBELLVILLE, August 15 - Hope For Paddy pulled off a large 35-1 upset in the Fillies and Mares Preferred pace Friday night at Mohawk. A field of seven harness racing mares, highlighted by the 2014 debut of last year's three-year-old pacing filly of the year I Luv The Nitelife, lined up for the $30,000 feature race. I Luv The Nitelife, who has been sidelined since last November with a knee fracture, was sent straight to the lead by driver Jack Moiseyev and got to call the shots throughout the mile. After setting fractions of :26.4, :54.4 and 1:23.3, I Luv The Nitelife was confronted at the three-quarter pole by the first up challenge of Hope For Paddy and driver James MacDonald. In the stretch, Hope For Paddy overtook the lead from I Luv The Nitelife and held off second place finisher American In Paris, who was towed around the final turn second over, and third place finisher Voelz Hanover, who got a two-hole trip behind I Luv The Nitelife, to pick up the victory in 1:50.4. I Luv The Nitelife faded back finishing fifth, while D Gs Pesquero rounded out the Superfecta in fourth. A five-year-old daughter of Mach Three - Hope For Life, the Preferred upset was the sixth win in 22 starts this season for Hope For Paddy and it was her first career victory at the Preferred level. Hope For Paddy is trained by Anthony Montini for owners Holland Racing Stable of Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ontario. Hope For Paddy's seasonal earnings increase to over $81,000 with the victory and her career earnings now sit at over $363,000. The Preferred score was Hope For Paddy's 23rd career visit to the winner's circle. She returned an eye-catching $80.30 to win. Live racing continues tomorrow night at Mohawk with a 13-race card beginning at 7:25 p.m. Tomorrow night's card features three divisions of both the Nassagaweya and Eternal Camnation Stakes. Mark McKelvie

The final edition of Breakfast With The Babies for the 2014 season began with Hambletonian favorite Father Patrick getting in some prep work in advance of next Saturday's big dance. His performance did nothing to encourage any Hambo fence-riders that may have been considering buying a $15,000 ticket to that dance. Yannick Gingras gave him a tour of the oval in 1:52 flat, back half in :54.4, last quarter :26.2 about as easy as it could be done. It looks like "All systems go" for team Father Patrick. Last year's champion three year old filly pacer I Luv The Nitelife made her return to the races this morning in winning fashion for owners Richard and Joanne Young. She has been nursed back to the races by trainer Chris Ryder after her season ending injury last fall and she looked sound and happy in her 2014 debut. Driver Tim Tetrick settled the mare in third through a slow 57.2 half, moved her on the last turn to a stretch lead then flashed her grit by refusing to yield to the late challenge of Bakersfield with a 27.1 close to the 1:53.2 mile. A pair of Meadowlands Pace finalists teed it up in the last race of the day and Lyonssomewhere got the best of JK Endofanera here by sprinting home in 26.2 on the end of a 1:51.1 mile. Trainer Jimmy Takter put the speedy colt on the lead through friendly fractions and had enough to rebuff JK Endofanera's close. So far as the freshmen, Habitat, a speedy Conway Hall colt that had made a pair of breaks in NYSS action recently, impressed with an effortless 1:55.3 / 27.1 win with Yannick Gingras aboard. Ron Burke trains colt for himself and partners Weaver Bruscemi and Our Horse Cents Stable. The group paid $50,000 for Habitat at the Lexington Selected Yearling Sale last fall. Trond Smedshammer won a couple this morning, the first with a nice Yankee Glide out of Calchips Finisher named Finish Line. He sat a pocket to first timer Sugarmakesmecrazy and Ake Svanstedt, nailing that one in the final strides of the 1:58.1 / 28.1 mile.He was a $50,000 Lexington buy for Trond's American Viking Stable, Diane Giuliano and Purple Haze. Trond came right back with the Andover Hall x Chez Belle filly Chezando, closing ground into a 28.4 final quarter for the 2:00.4 score. She cost Purple Haze and Michael Parisi $70,000 at Lexington last fall. The last of the baby trots fittingly saw Jimmy Takter win in 2:00.1 with French Laundry, a good Muscles Yankee colt who won a NJSS event in 1:56 a few weeks ago. He just held off the impressive closing rush of the $175,000 Cantab Hall colt Colbert who was making his very first start for Svanstedt. Pacers came around in the tenth race and ASAP Hanover won for the third time in morning trials, this one in 1:52.4 with Tim Tetrick driving. Linda Toscano trains the $150,000 Lexington sale colt by Somebeachsomewhere from Allamerican Coed for John Mehlenbacher. He has impressed and improved in each of his three outings. This time Tetrick put him on the lead and sprinted home in 26.4 in hand. Penji Hanover paced home hard to be second. Trainer Tony Alagna had a good day beginning with the eleventh where a pair of his pacing fillies went to the wire together with Cashaway tracking down Martinique in the final strides to get the 1:54.1 win. Cashaway was second in the recently contested NJSS final for Tim Tetrick, who drove the Western Ideal x CPA $105,000 Lexington sale grad today for owners Brittany Farms and Marvin Katz. New Jersey Sires Stakes champion Artspeak got some work in this morning, leading all the way and drawing off late in 1:53.2 over the pocket sitting Stover. The winner also hails from the Alagna barn with Scott Zeron doing the driving for owners Brittany Farms, Marvin Katz, Joe Sbrocco and In The Gym Partners (John Fodera and Steve Wienick). Racing manager Myron Bell bought the Western Ideal colt from The Art Museum for $100,000 in Lexington on their behalf and it certainly looks as though they've got a good one here. A Plus completed the Alagna natural hat trick by winning in 1:54.1 / 27.3 with Zeron aboard. She's an American Ideal filly out of the Brittany broodmare Has An Attitude that Tony bought for himself with partners In The Gym, Massey and Sbrocco for $60,000 in Kentucky. Better Said was a good second here with a late move for Toscano and Tetrick. Ed Hart's nice Cam's card Shark colt Dealt A Winner prevented an Alagna-slam when he held safe over Tony's closing Rock On The Hill in 1:54.2 for Brian Sears. Jeff Snyder owns the winner, a $35,000 Harrisburg bargain buy last fall. Live racing resumes at 7:15 this evening with the John Cashman Memorial eliminations headlining the thirteen race card. by Nick Salvi, for the Meadowlands

CAMPBELLVILLE, July 24 - The Show Returns, a full sister to world champion Put On A Show, captured the first leg of the Whenuwishuponastar Series Thursday night at Mohawk Racetrack. Only one $12,000 division was needed for leg one of the three-week series for two-year-old pacing fillies. The Show Returns and driver Jack Moiseyev got away fourth and make a second-quarter brush to the lead through a sensible half of :58.4. After leading the field past the three-quarter pole, Moiseyev turned up the tempo with The Show Returns for a final quarter of :27 to win by a length over Sheeztoughenough in 1:55.1. Aintsheasweetie and Yes You Can finished third and fourth respectively. The leg one victory was a maiden breaking score for The Show Returns in her third start of her young career. A daughter of Rocknroll Hanover - Stienams Place, The Show Returns is trained by Chris Ryder for owners Richard and Joanne Young. The same connections campaigned world champion Put On A Show ($2,459,903 - 1:47.3), a full-sister to The Show Returns, and I Luv The Nitelife ($1,946,011 - 1:48.4), last year's three-year-old pacing filly of the year. The Show Returns was $180,000 Lexington Selected Yearling Sale purchase and in three starts has earned just over $17,000. She paid $4.30 to win. Leg two of the Whenuwishuponastar Series goes next Thursday (July 31) at Mohawk, with the final scheduled to take place on Thursday, August 7. by Mark McKelvie, for WEG  

I Luv The Nitelife, who was named the best 3-year-old female pacer of 2013 in both the U.S. and Canada, is ready to return to action after being sidelined last November because of a fractured knee. She will compete in a qualifier Saturday morning at the Meadowlands, with the hopes of returning to stakes action in September. "Swim and train, that's been her program," said trainer Chris Ryder, adding happily, "Now we get to swim and race. That's better than training." I Luv The Nitelife won 13 of 15 races last year and $1.25 million for Ryder and owners Richard and Joanne Young. Her triumphs included the Breeders Crown, Fan Hanover, Valley Forge, Lynch Memorial, Jugette and Mistletoe Shalee. Her 1:48.4 time in the Valley Forge is the world record for a 3-year-old filly on a five-eighths-mile track. For her career, the daughter of Rocknroll Hanover-Lisjune has won 17 of 25 races and $1.94 million. No female pacer in history has won more money at ages 2 and 3. Ryder hopes to have I Luv The Nitelife, who suffered a minor setback because of atrial fibrillation in early June, ready for the Milton Stakes in mid-September. "She's going to qualify a couple times and then we'll look for an overnight or two," Ryder said. "She's training very well. Everything is good with her. "It's exciting. It's tough to get a horse like this. It's a little crushing when they go down. You get a little used to winning those big races; you can't take it for granted. When it's gone, you realize there's a hole there. And it's near impossible to fill." Father Patrick, who is 6-for-6 this year and will bring a 15-race win streak to the $1.2 million Hambletonian Stakes on Aug. 2 at the Meadowlands, also is entered to qualify on Saturday morning at the Big M. Other Hambletonian eligibles in the qualifier are Billy Ruffian, DD's Hitman, and Uva Hanover. On the pacing side, North America Cup winner JK Endofanera and Fan Hanover winner Uffizi Hanover are among 3-year-olds entered to qualify. Sweet Lou, the winner of six consecutive starts including the Ben Franklin Pace and William Haughton Memorial, is the 4-5 morning line favorite in Saturday's $40,000 A-2/A-1/FFA handicap for pacers at the Meadowlands. The seven-horse field also includes Captaintreacherous, Thinking Out Loud, and Golden Receiver. Maven, the sport's top older female trotter in 2013, is the 2-1 favorite in Friday's $30,000 A-2/A-1/FFA handicap for trotters at the Meadowlands. Coraggioso is the 3-1 second choice in the field of seven, which also includes Maven's stablemate D'Orsay. Maven and D'Orsay are the only females in the race. Dancin Yankee, who sits just outside the Top 10 in harness racing's weekly poll, goes for his sixth win in a row Saturday night in the preferred handicap at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs. He is the 5-2 morning line choice; Bolt The Duer is the 3-1 second pick. by Ken Weingartner, for Harness Racing Communications  

Sandbetweenurtoes has had a short harness racing career winning all four of her starts at age 2 and 3. Her most impressive win was in Pennsylvania Sires Stakes action last week at the Meadows. Her convincing victory  was the fastest of three divisions in 1:51.2 over a sloppy track. Does this make her a contender for top three-year-old filly honors this year?   Up in Canada, Uffizi Hanover won a hard fought victory in the Fan Hanover in 1:50.4 at Mohawk Raceway. Earlier in the year, Uffizi Hanover finished up the track racing against Pennsylvania Sire Stakes horses on May 3rd. She also lost to several Pennsylvania Sires Stakes caliber horses in the Ladyship at Pocono Downs on May 20th.  Her form has greatly improved over her last two starts in the Fan Hanover.   The three-year-filly division seems to be wide open. We have yet to see a stand out filly as we had last year with I Luv The Nitelife. Could Sandbetweenurtoes be that horse?   Sandbetweenurtoes was purchased by Brad Grant and placed in the Remmen Stable after an impressive maiden victory in 1:50.4 at the Meadowlands on May 9th.  After that race,Tony Alagna had told Larry Remmen that the horse was for sale.The rest is history as Larry got in touch with Brad Grant and a purchase deal was worked out. Why Tony sold the horse is a unanswered question. We may never know the what the purchase price was.   "The Remmen's were racing another horse against Sandbetweenurtoes on May 9th," said Grant. "After the race Larry found out she was for sale. He called me and it kind of went from there. Larry went over and checked her out. She was coming from a good barn.  It started on Saturday and the sale was done byMonday.   "She seems to be getting better with each race," stated Grant. "Ray and Larry have done a great job with her. I wish she was staked out a little more with what she is showing now. She wasn't showing that a year ago. I think she is competitive with the top fillies. She won't embarrass herself. I think she is as good as any of them."   "She looks like she is the real thing," said Larry Remmen. "She showed she could go with a better grade of fillies. We are trying to get a race in her before she goes in the Mistletoe Shallee, July 5th.   "She seems to be over her problems from last year," said Larry. "She can get a little excited before the start of a race. She put in a couple of steps the first time we raced her. She just wants to go so fast. She has calmed down quite a bit since.   "We don't know how good she is till someone goes with her," stated Larry. "I am glad she wasn't overly staked early in the year. We are taking small steps and it will benefit her.  I think she can hold her own with the best ones. We haven't had a filly like this in a long time."   Bret Miller has driven Sandbetweenurtoes in all three starts since coming into the Remmen barn. He was aboard her in two easy victories in non-winners of two and three. He shared his thoughts about her after her impressive win last week in the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes.   "She is a well put together strong filly," said Miller. "She won very easily the other day. Up and until the other night she was racing in overnights. You don't know how good they are until you get in with the stakes fillies. She really impressed me.   "She seems like a old pro despite having only four starts," said Miller. "When sitting behind her she acts like she has been racing for years. The Remmen's have done a great job of getting her ready. She's been totally professional and very relaxed.   "She did it on her own and I was just a passenger," stated Miller. "She been racing every race on the front end. I am anxious to get a race where she gets a trip and let some other horse do the work. I have been racing her on the front to keep her out of any trouble. She is the kind of horse I can do anything with.   "If Sandbetweenurtoes was in the Fan Hanover she could have competed with any of those fillies," said Miller. "I think she could be the top three-year-old filly this year."   The next big test for Sandbetweenurtoes will be in the Mistletoe Shalle Eliminations at the Meadowlands on July 5th. She will likely face off against Uffizi Hanover and all the other top three-year-old fillies in North America. We will find out that night if she belongs at the top of the class for the division.   by Brian McEvoy, for

The track it pedigrees for the 24 Deo Volente yearlings of 2014 can be found on their website at and activated by clicking on the yearlings name. Of the 24, 17 are slated for the Lexington selected sale as part of the Preferred Equine consignment. The remaining seven are slated for Harrisburg and will be consigned by Northwood Bloodstock. Among the Lexington highlights include Mikhail Deo, a Kadabra brother to this year’s sensational Perfect Alliance and Can’t Hold This a Donato Hanover colt from Yursa Hanover, she a near million dollar winning sister to Perfect Alliance’s dam Yalta Hanover. Among the outstanding pacing prospects are Timber (Art Major-Bjs Canouan) from a productive sister to Rocknroll Hanover and Charlies Man the Art Major colt from Worldly Beauty’s productive dam World Of Her Own. Charlies Man is thus a half brother to the well known Sir Richard Z Tam  Leading the Harrisburg offerings are Lovin Life (Western Ideal-Lisjune) a three quarter sister to last year’s brilliant I Luv The Nitelife and Mavens Way (Muscles Yankee-Doris Deo) he from a sister to Donato Hanover. From Deo Volente Farms

Freehold, NJ --- As the 2013 harness racing season came to a close, the then 3-year-old Captaintreacherous headed to the Meadowlands for a race against the sport’s best older male pacers. Although “The Captain” finished sixth in that race -- the $512,000 TVG Free for All Championship won by ageless Foiled Again -- trainer Tony Alagna was happy with what he saw. Now as the 4-year-old Captaintreacherous gets ready to compete regularly in the older division, Alagna remains pleased. Captaintreacherous returned to Alagna’s stable in February after two months of R&R at Brittany Farms in Kentucky and is being pointed toward a June return to action.        "He has matured a lot from the time he was turned out,” Alagna said. “He grew some more, he put on some more muscle tone. When we sent him to Brittany he was still in very good condition, flesh-wise and weight-wise, for as hard as he raced. When he came back in, he just put on more bulk. He looked tremendous when he came in. “Right now we’re shooting to qualify sometime at the end of May or the first part of June. We’ll set up his schedule after we qualify, but we’ll probably aim for the Meadowlands Maturity (on June 13). I’m very happy with his progress. You can just see that maturity and how much he’s changed with just 60 days turned out. It’s really amazing. I’m excited, very excited.” Captaintreacherous won 13 of 16 races and $2.05 million last season and received his second consecutive Pacer of the Year Award. His wins included the Breeders Crown, North America Cup, Meadowlands Pace, Max Hempt Memorial, Cane Pace and American-National Stakes. Trained by Alagna and driven by Tim Tetrick for the Captaintreacherous Racing ownership group, The Captain joined Rocknroll Hanover and Gallo Blue Chip as the only horses to win the Breeders Crown, North America Cup, and Meadowlands Pace in the same season. Captaintreacherous became the first horse to win back-to-back Pacer of the Year honors since Jenna's Beach Boy in 1995-96 and joined Niatross as the only horses to accomplish the feat at ages 2 and 3 since the award was first given in 1970. Pacer Bret Hanover was honored at ages 2, 3 and 4 with the Horse of the Year Award from 1964-66. Undefeated female trotter Bee A Magician received the 2013 Horse of the Year Award over Captaintreacherous and Foiled Again. “Of course you want to be Horse of the Year, but he got Pacer of the Year and I thought he deserved it,” Alagna said. “He put the best resume together for the entire year. No other pacer put together as complete a resume at (age) 2 or at 3 when he won the award. No horse compiled a whole year like he did. “Bee A Magician is a phenomenal filly and it was a great year for racing. I think this past year, when you had Captaintreacherous and Bee A Magician and I Luv The Nitelife and Foiled Again and Father Patrick -- there were so many great stories. You can go down the list. It was a great year for harness racing and I was just glad to be part of it. It’s exciting.” Captaintreacherous’ push for Horse of the Year likely would have received a boost with a win in the TVG final, but he finished sixth, beaten by only two lengths. He was trying to become the first prominent 3-year-old male pacer in more than 30 years to defeat older rivals in a stakes-caliber event. “Even though he didn’t win, he was only beaten two lengths for the victory after a hard 3-year-old campaign,” Alagna said. “I was happy to gauge where he fit against that bunch at the end of the year. “We knew it wouldn’t be easy. We had confidence and faith in our horse and hoped he’d win, but we weren’t going to dodge the opportunity to do something that was good for the industry as well. All the positive feedback that we received after the race; (ownership managing partner) Myron Bell can tell you stories about all the people who contacted him and thanked him for putting the horse in that race. That says something.” Captaintreacherous now joins Foiled Again, Golden Receiver and the rest of the sport’s top older pacers in a star-studded division. Foiled Again was Pacer of the Year in 2011 and is the division’s three-time defending champion. With $6.05 million in career purses, the 10-year-old is the richest harness racing horse in North American history. “You have to admire Foiled Again,” Alagna said. “I see him every day out here at the farm. He’s just an amazing athlete. He’s a great horse and he’s fun to watch.” Alagna is ready to join the fun with Captaintreacherous. “I haven’t raced a horse like this, as far as the older division, since Lis Mara,” Alagna said, referring to the sport’s top older male pacer of 2006, who he helped condition while second trainer for the Erv Miller Stable. “I have great memories of racing Lis Mara, going to places and how much the fans appreciate the older division. It’s going to be exciting.” by Ken Weingartner, for Harness Racing Communications

When you see Bob "Hollywood" Heyden, Communicators Hall of Famer and "King Of Statistics" for The Meadowlands and almost any other point, walking towards you with his head cocked at a slight but unmissable angle, you know you're about to be asked the hardest harness racing trivia question of your life. I saw Mr. Heyden at Dover Downs this past weekend, just before the annual meetings and Dan Patch Awards Banquet of the United States Harness Writers Association. He walked towards me, head at telling angle. I braced myself. "Jerryconnors, this year Shebestingin and Beeamagician both went faster than any of their three-year-old colt counterparts. When was thelasttime that thathappened?" (Bob's brain is always in hyperwarpdrive, and sometimes the words come out of his mouth as if frantically trying to keep up with the grey matter that had just produced them.) When defeated, honesty is best. "I don't know, Bob. I could do some research on the computer, but I don't think they have the entire history of season's leaders anywhere. But I'll take a look and let you know what I find." Walking back to my room, I realized again that the entire history of season's leaders probably wasn't online, but I did think of one thing that WOULD be online - the Trotting and Pacing Guide carries the lists of all the divisional champions from the beginning of such voting. (There are some advantages to once having been the editor of the "T and P," even if it was 28 years ago.) This would not perfectly answer Bob's question - just this past year, Shebestingin's 1:47 was the fastest in her division, but I Luv The Nitelife was voted the divisional crown - but it was all that I had. My research from those lists showed me that there were eight 3YO trotting filly champions whose quickest time had beaten their counterpart males - Bee A Magician of course, Housethatruthbuilt, Syrinx Hanover, Continentalvictory and C R Kay Suzie in successive years, Whiteland Janice, Peace Corps, and Fancy Crown, with two fillies equaling the male best. (The fillies were voted on separately from the colts beginning only in 1978 - something I sorta knew but had forgotten.) There were also two ties on the pacing side, and three years when the filly outpaced the colts outright. The amazing thing here is that the pacing feats happened in three consecutive years, 1981-1983, by Fan Hanover, Three Diamonds, and Turn The Tide, and the feat had not been duplicated in the last 31 campaigns on the sidewheeling side! If Heyden would allow me to substitute "divisional champions" for "season's leaders" (and hey, we were at Dover to honor divisional voting champions at the Dan Patch banquet, right?), I would have a challenging answer for him. See if you can figure the difference in these two true statements: --In no year did both sophomore filly champions go faster than their male counterparts, and --In one year both sophomore colt champions did not go faster than their filly counterparts. If you look above, I didn't mention who the horses were in the "tied" situations: we've already established Turn The Tide was the faster pacing sophomore of 1983, and on the trotting side, colt champ Joie de Vie and filly counterpart Duenna both froze the timer in 1:56.3 in the quickest outings. So we have a "one-beat and one-tied" situation in 1983, falling in the middle - which is a great place for a trivia answer to locate itself, making it even more challenging. I reported my findings back to Heyden. "Notgoodenough," Bob answered, notunexpectedly. "I thought you could do better than that." And off he went to a mental galaxy far, far away from the rest of us - or else back to the table where he was sitting with Ellen Taylor; I couldn't tell which. Bob knows where to possibly get the answers: check places that have a full set of Trotting and Pacing Guides, like the USTA or the Hall of Fame, and see if they published season's leaders back as far as he needs; check with the Horseman and Fair World, which keeps a list of season's leaders, but might not update it after their Christmas issue; or ask sainted David Carr of the USTA to see if a few hundred keystrokes will be able to elicit the answer from the USTA archives. If not, the question will just become mental file card #3,574,826 in the amazing brain of Bob "Hollywood" Heyden, with a red note - "TOBECHECKEDLATER." ***** And then, lo and behold, on Sunday in the Dover paddock, I lucked into coming across one of the greatest pieces of trivia of all-time. Not 10 feet apart from each other were two gentlemen who are both members of a very, very exclusive club - they were both the leading dashwinning drivers at tracks that hosted just ONE season of harness racing! They accomplished their feats 15 years apart. And they both have the same initials! Anybody want to take a stab? (The answer to come - I PROMISE - in an upcoming column.) by Jerry Connors for

There is a “grass roots” movement currently going on in harness racing, which is being led by two prominent horse owners, Richard and Joanne Young of South Florida. They have been owners in the Standardbred industry for 20 plus years. Joanne has been riding and showing Arabian horses for 30 years. Over the years they have had the pleasure of owning not one, but two world champion performers, Put On A Show (31 wins in 50 starts with earnings of $2.4 million) and I Luv The Nitelife (17 wins in 25 stars with earnings of $1.9 million) in addition to other stakes winners over the years. I Luv The Nitelife was recently announced as the Three-Year-Old Pacing Filly of the Year for 2013. They travel throughout the country to watch their horse’s race and are big supporters of the industry. Now the Young’s are on a different mission, one that has been involved in a series of hotly debated discussions for years but solutions have been far from being solved. The Young’s want every track and state racing commission that has harness racing to put a stop to drivers who over use the whip in races and take their feet and touch or kick their horse during a race. This all came about because someone did a blog on the internet last Fall, regarding the non compliance with the rules regarding kicking and whipping that woke Joanne Young up. The Young’s took the initiative and started asking and inquiring about the rules and regulations of various states. They sent letters and emails to major race and industry officials throughout the country and learned quite a bit. “I couldn’t tell you how many emails, letters and calls we made,” Joanne said. “ We got back some calls and about a half dozen emails and some of them were so encouraging. Most states have rules but track management and the judges need to enforce them and in some cases increase the fines and suspensions significantly so drivers will not abuse the horses as many do.” “Tracks and judges make their own rules and maybe give a fine after a couple of offenses.” Young said. “It’s like a slap on the wrist and some drivers may say it’s worth the fine to win the race because of the purse. Personally I don’t see why either method is used.  These horses are bred to race and I don’t believe that a whip or a “kick” does anything to make the horse perform better.  To those people that say the “kick” is nothing and does not hurt the horse, I say all you have to do is watch what happens to the driver’s leg when he comes into contact with the hock.  The leg is forcefully pushed back and looks like kicking.  So whatever you want to call it, it looks horrible and the public perceives it as abuse.  For that reason alone it needs to be banned.”  According The United States Trotting Association’s penalties that are suggestions as guidelines to pari-mutuel state gaming commission and racetracks are:  “The penalty for kicking as defined herein shall not be less than 9 days suspension.”  For excessive whipping the suggestion is, “The mandatory minimum penalty for a whipping violation shall be a fine in the amount of $100 and a 3 day suspension from driving for the first offense and for each subsequent violation the mandatory minimum penalty shall increase in the amount of $100 and 3 days (e.g. $200 and 6 days for the 2nd offense, $300 and 9 days for the 3rd offense, etc.)”  “These rules are a joke and everyone in the harness racing business knows it, because either they are not enforced or the penalty is too lenient.” Joanne Young said. “ We want to see a cohesive rule that states that the right hand remain on the right line and the left hand remain on the left line during the race and that the feet must have no contact with the horse.    “The penalty for not following these rules will be suspension for 2 months and a $5,000 fine,” Young continued, “or placement of the horse. We need to make the punishment harsh enough to stop the actions.  Of course an easier fix is just to ban both practices immediately. Other countries have rules in place and no kicking or one handing whipping is allowed or tolerated. If the owners/drivers/trainers lose money you can bet that the drivers will stop immediately. We need to bring some credibility back to this sport.” Jeff Gural, the prominent owner and CEO of three racetracks, the Meadowlands, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs, wrote back and also talked with the Young’s about their quest and encouraged them with this scenario. “I met with the drivers before the start of the meet,” Gural said, “and told them anyone kicking a horse would not be allowed to drive at our tracks, period. No one complained. The whipping is tricky because to change the rule in NJ you need public hearings, etc. The drivers are opposed to this but we have implemented a temporary rule which has cut it way down, but I will back any effort to make the rules stricter.” Joanne has been in touch with the Ohio and Kentucky Racing Commission in regards to their recent rule changes.  She is also in the midst of trying to get a rule change on the agenda with the New Jersey Racing Commission. The Young’s also have had encouraging conversations with prominent owners, drivers and trainers who are on board with rule changes and harsher penalties.  Not everyone though wants to publicly share his or her personal views.  According to Joanne, this is due to the fact that the  “old school” of racing sees nothing wrong with the status quo and some fear repercussions.  “We had one judge,” Richard Young said, “Who actually said he had no problem with a driver touching the hock or flank of a horse when racing and that as long as a driver did not slash a horse with a whip, it was okay. He said horses are tough and can take it. That just infuriated us to no end. How can anyone, especially, a racing judge, say something like that?  “We want this movement to be in a positive light,” Joanne Young explained. “There is a public perception of abuse and we can and should stop it. It is an easy fix for the harness racing commissions to all agree to a cohesive and enforceable rule. I also believe the drivers would like the same rule for all the harness tracks making their job easier.  The USTA is going to be meeting this March. If you a proponent of banning the kicking and one handed whipping please voice your opinion with them or contact me. All we need is for the racing commissions to agree, and we can finally put this controversial subject to rest.” By Steve Wolf for

Monticello, NY - Tickets are going fast --- don't be shut out --- place your banquet reservations now!   The highly anticipated winner of harness racing's E. Roland Harriman Harness Horse of the Year trophy will be announced live by the United States Harness Writers Association on Sunday, February 23, 2014 at Dover Downs, Dover, Delaware.   Tickets for this gala event, the Dan Patch Awards Banquet Night of Champions, will only be available until this Tuesday, February 18.   In addition to the twelve equine divisional honors, including Bee A Magician, Foiled Again, Captaintreacherous and I Luv The Nitelife, a full field of the industry's biggest and brightest will be feted at the annual awards ceremony.   This year's inductees to the Harness Racing Hall of Fame, David Miller and Bill Weaver; and Communicators Hall of Fame, Carol Cramer and John Pawlak will also be honored.   In addition, the U. S. Harness Writers list of human awards also includes the Stan Bergstein Proximity Award winner, Joe Thomson, as well as the Owner, Trainer, Driver, and Breeder of the Year, Rising Star, Breakthrough, Good Guy and a host of others, a list of which are available on the website.   Tickets cost $125 for the Dan Patch Awards Banquet and include a one-hour open bar, as well as a main course of Lobster & Filet Mignon "Surf & Turf."   Tickets can be reserved via telephone or Email by contacting Judy Davis-Wilson (302.359.3630), or Scott Warren (302.222.1222), by Chris Tully for USHWA  

Standardbred Canada has announced the winners of the 2013 O’Brien Awards, which honour Canada’s best in harness racing over the past season. In celebration of the 25th anniversary of the event, the annual Black Tie Gala was held in Charlottetown, PEI, at the Delta Prince Edward Hotel and PEI Convention Centre. The awards are named in honour of the late Joe O’Brien, an outstanding horseman and member of the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame. O’Brien was born in Alberton, PEI. Bee A Magician who was perfect in her 2013 season, was the unanimous choice in the Three-Year -Old Trotting Filly division and was also voted Canada’s Horse of The Year. Bee A Magician won all 17 of her races last season and earned in excess of $1.57 million for a perfect sophomore campaign. The daughter of Hall of Fame sire Kadabra took a mark of 1:51 at the Meadowlands Racetrack. The invincible filly’s stakes victories included the SBOA elimination and final, the Casual Breeze, the Elegantimage elimination and final, three Ontario Sires Stakes events including the Super Final, the Delvin Miller, Hambletonian Oaks elimination and final, the Simcoe, Breeders Crown elimination and final, American National and Moni Maker. Sylvain Filion successfully defended his Driver of The Year title. In 2013 he led all reinsmen in the nation in terms of purse earnings, as his mounts banked $6,111,736. Filion finished as the leading money-winning driver on the Woodbine Entertainment Group circuit with over $5 million to his credit between Mohawk Racetrack and Woodbine Racetrack. The resident of Milton, Ont. earned the Lampman Cup for the second straight year, as he topped the Ontario Sires Stakes standings for drivers. Filion celebrated his richest win of the season while steering Boomboom Ballykeel to a 10-1 upset victory in the $683,000 Metro Pace at Mohawk Racetrack. Richard Moreau was voted Trainer of The Year following an impressive season that saw his stable win 279 races and earn $3,623,805 in purses. The resident of Puslinch, Ont. earned training titles across Ontario at Georgian Downs, Grand River Raceway, Mohawk Racetrack, The Raceway at Western Fair District and Woodbine Racetrack. Moreau topped the Canadian trainer standings with $3.5 million in earnings and 270 wins. He celebrated the biggest win of his career this past season when Boomboom Ballykeel captured the Metro Pace at Mohawk Racetrack. The 2013 season marked the 14th consecutive year that his stable has surpassed the $1-million mark in purse earnings. Alberta’s Kelly Hoerdt won the O’Brien Award of Horsemanship. Hoerdt is a successful driver/trainer who is annually near the top of the training and driving charts in Alberta. The 2013 season was another productive year for Hoerdt, as he trained 82 winners and horses to $623,000, and drove 66 winners and horses that earned over $490,000. Hoerdt was the leading trainer in terms of earnings at Alberta Downs. His stable was led by sophomore pacing colt Premium Attaction, a multiple stakes winner that rattled off six wins in 11 races and over $111,000 Precocious Beauty was honoured as Two-Year-Old Pacing Filly of The Year. Precocious Beauty won seven of 11 races, $462,912 in purses and took a mark of 1:50.1 which tied a world record for a one-mile track. Her richest payday was a victory in the Shes A Great Lady at Mohawk. The two-year-old pacing colt title went to Arthur Blue Chip, who scored six wins in 11 starts and bankrolled $400,120 for his connections. The son of Shadow Play took a mark of 1:51.2 in his Metro Pace elimination at Mohawk before being scratched ‘sick’ from the final. His most lucrative payday was a runner-up finish in the Governor’s Cup. He also won a handful of Ontario Sires Stakes races, an elimination of the Battle of Waterloo and a division of the Nassagaweya Stakes. I Luv The Nitelife returned as a seasoned sophomore in 2013 and added another O’Brien (Three-Year-Old Pacing Filly of The Year) to her trophy case. The talented filly boasted a record of 13-1-1 in 15 races and $1.2 million in earnings. She took a mark of 1:48.4 in the Valley Forge at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs. She also set a two-heat world record of 3:42.2 in the Jugette. She swept the Fan Hanover, the Lynch, the Mistletoe Shalee and closed the season as strongly as she began with a win in the Breeders Crown and runner up finish in the American National. Little Brown Jug winner Vegas Vacation took the hardware home as Canada’s Three-Year-Old Pacing Colt of The Year. Vegas Vacation gave his connections the ride of a lifetime in 2013. Conditioned by Casie Coleman, the son of Bettors Delight put together a sophomore record reading 10-4-1 from 20 starts while banking $976,037 in purses. He wheeled off victories in his first four races which included the Somebeachsomewhere Stakes and an elimination of the Pepsi North America Cup. On September 19 he captured the Little Brown Jug in straight heats – both timed in 1:50. ‘Vegas’ finished his sophomore season with a win in the Matron Stakes to put his bankroll at just over $976,000. Anndrovette continued to dominate the pacing mare ranks in 2013, and, for the third consecutive year, was crowned Canada’s Older Pacing Mare of The Year. The daughter of Riverboat King was on the board in all but three of her 21 races. Some of her major wins included three legs of the Blue Chip Matchmaker Series at Yonkers Raceway along with the Roses Are Red and Breeders Crown eliminations. On July 20 at Mohawk Racetrack she captured the Roses Are Red final in a career best 1:48. The talented mare now has 35 lifetime wins and a career bankroll of almost $2.6 million. The $6 million horse, Foiled Again was voted Canada’s Older Pacing Horse of The Year. Foiled Again didn’t show any signs of slowing down in his nine-year-old season, as he won 11 of his 29 starts, including three Levy divisions, the Ben Franklin elimination and final, as well as the Breeders Crown elimination and final for his third straight million-dollar campaign. He entered the year within reach of the all-time earnings record for pacers, and he managed to obliterate that mark by adding $1.4 million to his bank account while visiting 11 different racetracks along the way. He closed the season by sweeping the elimination and final of the TVG Free For All Pace at the Meadowlands. Riveting Rosie was the winner in the two-year-old filly trotting category. Riveting Rosie closed out her rookie campaign with six wins in eight starts and earnings of $468,613. Her major victories included the Peaceful Way Final, her Ontario Stakes Super Final and a division of the Champlain Stakes. In the Two-Year-Old Trotting Colt division, it was Father Patrick who took the O’Brien trophy. He topped the earnings chart in his division and was flawless in 10 stakes starts with his only blemish coming in an early season two-year-old race where he was beaten by just a head. Father Patrick amassed $752,395 in earnings with major wins in the Breeders Crown, Peter Haughton Memorial, William Wellwood Memorial Trot, Champlain Stakes and Bluegrass Series. Flanagan Memory was voted Three-Year-Old Trotting Colt of the Year after a productive season which saw him win seven of 11 races and $408,798 in earnings. He clocked a season’s best 1:53 effort in winning his Ontario Sires Stakes Super Final at Mohawk. He also scored victories in the Goodtimes and several OSS events. Maven was voted Canada’s Older Trotting Mare of The Year. Since winning the 2012 Breeders Crown at Woodbine Racetrack, Maven has been one of the most consistent trotters in North America. She added wins in the Miss Versatility Trotting Series, an elimination and final of the Armbro Flight, and the Allerage. She showed just how good she was by claiming a second Breeders Crown title. At season’s end Maven had won 10 of 14 races, and added $513,485 to her bankroll. For the second consecutive year, Mister Herbie captured the title as Canada’s Older Trotting Horse of The Year. Although Mister Herbie only won one race in 2013, he was a strong contender in many of the major stakes and scored six runner-up finishes in stakes competition, including the Maple Leaf Trot, Allerage, John Cashman Memorial and Breeders Crown, finishing the season with $492,067 in purses. Seelster Farms, of Lucan, Ont. was honoured as the Armstrong Breeder of The Year. In 2013, Seelster-bred horses scored 248 wins and $2.1 million in earnings. In the Future Star category, the winner of this first-time award was trainer/driver Travis Cullen. The 21-year-old Alberta-based horseman closed out Alberta Downs' 2013 meet with five wins on the final card of the meet while securing both the Lacombe track's driving and training titles. Amidst a career-best year, the Edmonton horseman concluded the Alberta meet with a chart-topping 64 training victories and 86 driving wins. The complete list of winners follows. 2013 O’BRIEN AWARD WINNERS PACERS Two-Year-Old Filly Pacer - Precocious Beauty owned by James L Avritt Sr., Lebanon, KY Two-Year-Old Colt Pacer - Arthur Blue Chip owned by Dr. Ian Moore, Guelph, ON – R G McGroup Ltd., Bathurst, NB – Serge Savard, Saint-Bruno, QC Three-Year-Old Filly Pacer - I Luv The Nitelife owned by Richard P. Young, Boca Raton- Joanne Young, Coconut Creek, FL Three-Year-Old Colt Pacer - Vegas Vacation owned by West Wins Stable, Cambridge- Adriano Sorella, Milton – Anthony B Beaton, Waterdown – Phyllis M Saunders, Hamilton, ON Older Pacing Mare - Anndrovette owned by Bamond Racing LLC, Brick – Joseph Davino, Clarksburg, NJ Older Pacing Horse - Foiled Again owned by Burke Racing Stable LLC, Fredericktown – Weaver Bruscemi LLC, Canonsburg, PA – JJK Stables LLC, Fort Lauderdale, FL TROTTERS Two-Year-Old Filly Trotter - Riveting Rosie owned by Parkhill Stud Farm, Peterborough – Don Allensen, Wyoming – J And T Stable Newmarket – John F Hayes, Sharon, ON Two-Year-Old Colt Trotter - Father Patrick owned by Father Patrick Stable, East Windsor, NJ Three-Year-Old Filly Trotter - Bee A Magician owned by Melvin Hartman, Ottawa, ON – Herb Liverman, Miami Beach – David H McDuffee, Delray Beach, FL Three-Year-Old Colt Trotter - Flanagan Memory owned by Liette Flanagan, Repentigny-Rene Dion, Saint-Lazare, QC Older Trotting Mare - Maven owned by William J. Donovan, Ft Lauderdale, FL Older Trotting Horse - Mister Herbie owned by Jeffrey R Gillis, Hillsburgh – Mac T Nichol, Burlington, ON- Gerald T Stay, Buffalo, NY PEOPLE AWARDS O’Brien Award of Horsemanship Kelly Hoerdt, Beaumont, AB Armstrong Breeder of The Year Seelster Farms, Lucan, ON Driver of The Year Sylvain Filion, Milton, ON Trainer of The Year Richard Moreau, Puslinch, ON Future Star Award Travis Cullen, Edmonton, AB STANDARDBRED CANADA MEDIA EXCELLENCE AWARDS The Media Excellence Awards program, established by Standardbred Canada in 2008, is aimed at honouring exceptional work that covers Canadian harness racing in a manner that is extraordinary and of broad national appeal. Outstanding Written Work Paul Delean ’Reaching Improbable Heights’ 'Reaching Improbable Heights', written by Paul Delean, was published in the December, 2012 issue of Trot Magazine. It tells the story of trotter Intimidate’s incredible journey from obscurity to harness racing’s biggest stage and the ride of a lifetime that two smalltime owners from Quebec are still pinching themselves over. Outstanding Broadcast Woodbine Entertainment Group North America Cup HD Broadcast Woodbine Entertainment Group’s North America Cup broadcast aired across Canada on The Score television network on Saturday, June 26, 2013. The one-hour special of the $1-million North America Cup was the first live high definition broadcast of a standardbred race in Canada. The show featured live race coverage of the main event, a feature on Marvin Katz (co-owner of eventual winner Captaintreacherous) and a profile of a very special racing fan – Sydney Weaver. The broadcast was a production of WEG’s broadcast department, produced by Rob Platts and directed by Kris Platts. Outstanding Photography Clive Cohen Clive Cohen captured the sunset behind trainer Rene Dion warming up Ocean Mist Beauty on September 19, 2013 at Mohawk Racetrack. The image was published on WEG’s Facebook page later that night. Reprinted with permission by

Corey Callahan and Ron Piece had another big winning week, each driver winning four races three days each. Callahan leads all drivers in the sport in 2014 with 80 wins. 2012 champion Dave Palone is second with 56. Ron Pierce is tied for third with 53 winners. Other Dover Downs reinsmen in the top 50 driver standings are Ross Wolfenden with 34, Allan Davis, 26, Trace Tetrick, 22 and George Dennis 19 since Jan. 1. In trainer standings, Ron Burke, who has won the title the last five seasons is first with 64 win, Josh Green is third with 25, Dylan Davis, fourth with 24. ------------------------------------------------------------- Horseman and humanitarian Ken Wood has just returned from his 32nd 20,000-mile round-trip to Africa. The three-week long round-trip was his latest on-going personal crusade to provide water, first to Ghana, and now, expanded to Tanzania. Wood's acclaimed, 'Wells For Ghana' drilling provides water to inhabitants who previously had to walk five miles to find water that was deemed unsafe. Over the years, Wood has built 1,130 wells in Ghana including Tanzania's 266 new wells. The wells built by Wood serve more than 2-million native Africans, who until now, never have had fresh water. What must be noted, is purse monies won by horses Wood races, is the main support of his humanitarian effort. -------------------------------------------------------------- Dover Downs will host harness racing's biggest Winter celebration, the U.S. Harness Writers Association's (USHWA) Night of Champions, on Sunday, Feb. 23 in the Rollins Center. Three local horsemen, Corey Callahan, Judy Davis-Wilson and Janet Davis will be honored at USHWA Night of Champions. Callahan receives the "Rising Star Award," Wilson is USHWAn of the Year while Davis gets the Harness Horse Youth Foundations for her voluntary work to make Christmas a happy time for hundreds of youngster in Delaware. The event features the top horse and human awards for the recent 2013 season and the naming of the Horse of the Year. Trotter Bee A Magician, pacer Captaintreacherous and filly I Luv The Nitelife are the leading contenders. All award-winning divisional champion horses and individual standouts of the recent season will be honored. Tickets are $125 per person. Call Judy Davis-Wilson at 302-359-3630 or e-mail; or Scott Warren at 302-222-1222 or You can visit the USHWA website: . ----------------------------------- Tim Tetrick returned to the track on Wednesday (2/5) driving two horses he co-owns. Both finished in the money, but those two races were won by Tim's brother, Trace Tetrick. Tim will be back in the bike on Monday at Dover Downs. Tim would get his first win back at the Meadowlands on Thursday. ---------------------------- A big four-win driving show on Thursday (2/6) by Chris Page was his final appearance at Dover Downs. Page now heads back to his native Ohio to race at the brand -new Miami Valley meet. All four of Page's wins came driving Josh Green-trained horses. Corey Callahan and Ron Pierce also had four winning drives on the card. ----------------------------------------------------------- Again in the 2014 season, Corey Callahan is off to a fast start winning races in bunches since the current meet began on Nov. 3. Last season, after winning his fourth straight tack leading driver title, Callahan completed the year ranked fourth among more than a thousand drivers who participated during the year. This meet, Callahan leads the Dover Downs 2013-14 standings with 152 wins. Allan Davis is runner-up with 75 wins. Ross Wolfenden is next with 74 wins. Vic Kirby is fourth winning 61. Tony Morgan completes the top five with 550 wins. ------------------------------------------------ Allan Davis is converging on becoming a 1,000-race winner. Davis now has 9,996 lifetime wins and just under $10-million in purse money won by horses he has driven. Jonathan Roberts, who has 2,426 wins is nearing $20-million in career money won. ------------------------------------ Dylan Davis has taken over undisputed possession of first place in the leading trainer standings with 44 wins. Wayne Givens is second with 37 winners. Trish Foulk is third with 35 wins. Joe Hundertpfund is fourth, 29 wins and Les Givens, 26, is fifth in the standings. by Marv Bachrad for Dover Downs  

When the Denver Broncos race out onto the field on Super Bowl Sunday, first out and leading is their great white Arabian stallion named Thunder.UPDATED: It has now been correctly reported that Thunder is staying at Jackie Hundertpfund's Golden Gait Farm in Millstone, NJ. ---------------------------- A bitter cold wave continued to sweep the country, with low temperatures during mid-week, but fast miles continue at the track. Corey Callahan and Ron Piece had big win weeks, each driver winning four races two times each. -------------------------- Corey Callahan, Judy Davis-Wilson and Janet Davis will be honored on Sunday, Feb. 23 at the Rollins Center at Dover Downs during the U.S. Harness Writers Association (USHWA) Night of Champions. The prestigious "Dan Patch Awards," are the highlight of the gala annual awards-dinner. Driver Corey Callahan is recipient of "Rising Star" award. Judy Davis-Wilson will receive The USHWAn award for her contribution to the sport, and Janet Davis, who has done so much to make Christmas a happy time for hundreds of Delaware youngsters who would be forgotten at the holiday. She will be honored by Harness Horse Youth Foundation with its annual award. The event features the top horse and human awards for the 2013 season. A highlight of the event will be the naming of the 2013 Horse of the Year. Trotter Bee A Magician, pacer Captaintreacherous and filly I Luv The Nitelife are the leading contenders. All award-winning divisional champion horses and individual standouts of the recent season will be honored. Tickets are $125 per person. Call Judy Davis-Wilson at 302-359-3630 or e-mail; or Scott Warren at 302-222-1222 or You can visit the USHWA website: . ----------------------------------- Sambad was claimed for the fourth consecutive start on Monday (1/24). In the race, the pacer finally broke a string of four consecutive second-place finish scoring a 1:54.4 victory in a Delaware $10,000 Male Claiming pace. ------------------------------------------- On Wednesday, former Dover Downs champion Tim Tetrick celebrated getting an OK from his doctor to return to driving, after a December hip replacement. He was a spectator on Tuesday and Wednesday to watch two horses he has an ownership interest in race. One of them, Line Item, a trotter he owns with trainer Jim King, make the winner's circle in an $11,500 4&5-Year-Old trot with a 1:56 victory. ----------------------------------------------------------- Again in 2014, Corey Callahan is off to a fast start winning races in bunches. As early last year, Callahan leads the sport in winning drives, Callahan completed the 2013 season in fourth-place among the thousands of drivers who participated. Callahan is currently the early leader among drivers in the sport. With four wins on Wednesday and Thursday (1/29 and 1/30) Callahan leads the Dover Downs 2013-14 standings seeking a fifth consecutive meet title. He has 141 wins this meet and an overwhelming meet-lead. Allan Davis is runner-up with 69 wins. Ross Wolfenden is third in the standings with 70 wins. Vic Kirby is fourth winning 59. Tony Morgan completes the top five with 53 wins. Allan Davis is converging on becoming a 1,000-race winner. Davis now has 9995 wins. ------------------------------------ There is an on-going battle for first-place in the leading trainer standings. With three wins Thursday, Dylan Davis has moved into undisputed possession of first place with 39 wins. Wayne Givens is second with 37 winners. Trish Foulk is third with 34 wins. Joe Hundertpfund is fourth, 28 wins and Les Givens with 25 is fifth in the standings. By Marv Bachrad for Dover Downs  

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